Am 10.12. 2003 wurde “Alburnus Maior” während der rumänischen Gala der Zivilgesellschaft – Gala Societatii Civile mit einem Preis ausgezeichnet. Hierzu gibt es auf englisch eine Pressemitteilung von “Alburnus Maior” – weitere Informationen gibt es auf www.galasocietatiicivile.ro and www.rosiamontana.org.
Honouring Civic and Civil Disobedience
Bucharest, Romania; 12. December 2003 – Two days ago Alburnus Maior was honoured for its campaign to ‘Save Rosia Montana’ at the Gala Societatii Civile; a prestigious annual event celebrating social activism. Alburnus Maior was awarded for best civic attitude and public participation.
Alburnus Maior is an NGO based in Rosia Montana. It was founded in September 2000 in opposition to Rosia Montana Gold Corporation’s (RMGC) Rosia Montana open cast gold mining project. If realised the mining project would be europe’s largest of its kind; entailing amongst other, the involuntary resettlement of over 2000 people (see www.gabrielresources.com). Alburnus Maior represents the interests of well over 400 families from Rosia Montana and Bucium who oppose RMGC’s project on social, environmental, economic and patrimonial grounds. The overwhelming majority of its members are subsistence farmers with many of them also having worked in the mining sector.
1000 leaders from Romania’s NGO, media, business and political sectors gathered at Bucharest’s National Theatre to attend the Gala Societatii Civile. This annual event was the second of its kind and the various categories honoured; amongst other were: human rights, environmental protection, education & research, arts & culture, social services as well as economic & social development. Recipients usually are NGOs, initiative groups, trade unions or individuals.
Recipients of the Gala Societatii Civile 2003 Award included Jonathan Scheele, Head of Bucharest’s EU Delegation; APADOR-CH, Academia Catavencu and World Vision Romania/ Iasi (see www.galasocietatiicivile.ro).
Alburnus Maior submitted its candidature for the so-called ‘Save Rosia Montana’ project. Between April and October 2003 Alburnus Maior together with PATRIR, its Cluj- based partner organisation, and eleven further national and international NGOs initiated an information campaign targeting the area around Rosia Montana. The project consisted of three components: A Caravan collecting signatures for a regional referendum; An info event in a major and relevant town (Cimpeni) and The Solidarity March for Rosia Montana.
The project’s main objective was to mobilize the people of the Ariesului Valley by informing them about the true impacts of RMGC’s mining project and to encourage civic and civil involvement in the decision making process. Contrary to RMGC’s propaganda its’ project does not enjoy the population’s support. The “Save Rosia Montana” project, amongst other, highlighted that in the event that RMGC’s mining project will be realized it would be based on a political decision rather than popular support. Given the target groups’ overwhelming positive reception the “Save Rosia Montana” project also showed that when people are left free to express themselves then Romania exposes a truly dynamic, creative and just civil society.
Eugen David, president of Alburnus Maior was delighted to accept the prize on behalf of all involved partners. “This prize does not belong to me but to Romania’s civil society. I am overjoyed to be amongst you tonight; yet it is difficult to be here when Rosia Montana is threatened by extinction under the banner of so-called ‘development’. It is time for Romania to refuse projects, which whilst being promoted to greatly contribute to development, in effect will have disastrous impacts on all sectors truly important to life.”
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For more information contact Alburnus Maior on +40 (0) 258 859 328 or Eugen David on +40 (0) 740 280309 and visit www.rosiamontana.org